There is an assumption that as an art form, dance is associated with and categorised as a hobby or as leisure. Few people outside the dance world would consider dancing to be a 'legitimate way of life'. So when asked by relatives, friends of my parents, students from other universities, or even acquaintances, I dread the judgement and lack of understanding that often comes with asking what I am studying at uni.
Many people fail to realise is that there is a great amount of personal and academic dedication, physical exertion and emotional investment in the vigorous training that is required in dance. It is not just 'prancing around a room', as many people have eloquently put it to me.
Of course I had considered pursuing other career paths, which would have required, and lead to, a much more academic background. However after consideration, I decided I would do what would make me happiest. No part of me wants to spend three years studying something that I am not interested in, only to lead me into a job that I have no passion for. I would much rather spend three years developing my dance technique and knowledge of dance to give myself the opportunity to fulfill my dream. I am aware that the chances of me becoming a successful professional dancer are slim. But why should this stop me? I would only regret the mistakes I didn't make.
I choose to dance because it makes me insanely and deliriously happy. Have the courage to pursue what makes you happy.